WAYNE, Mich. (AP) - Ford Motor Co. will invest $550 million to convert its old Michigan Truck Plant into a facility that will build small compact modern cars, the car maker said Wednesday.
The retooled facility, which once built sport utility vehicles like the Lincoln Navigator, will now build Ford's next-generation Focus, expected to roll off the line next year.
The plant will also build a new battery-electric version of the Focus for the North American market. That vehicle is expected to debut in 2011.
Ford "gets it". A balanced lineup is on tap for the future.
"We're changing from a company focused mainly on trucks and SUVs to a company with a balanced product lineup that includes even more high-quality, fuel-efficient small cars, hybrids and all-electric vehicles," said Mark Fields, Ford's president of The Americas, in a statement.
The Dearborn, Mich.-based automaker will also build the same Focus it is offering its North American customers in Europe and Asia.
In addition to Ford's zero-emission Focus battery-electric car, the company is working on several other product plans. The company is working with Smith Electric to sell a battery electric commercial vehicle for North America in 2010. It also plans to introduce in 2012 a next-generation hybrid vehicle and a plug-in hybrid vehicle.
They sure have managed to play all the right cards at all the right times during this crisis. Good on you, Ford. And thank you. Looking forward to seeing the new wheels.